I write, I edit and I read. I’ve worked as a proofreader, a copywriter, an editor and a creator of online content for training organizations. For a while I worked as an organization psychologist, running training courses for a variety of well-known companies. You can tell from this brief history that I’ve never really been satisfied with a formal job description, and at the back of my mind I’ve always had the idea that I would return to writing. I started young and by the age of twenty two I’d written seven unpublishable novels, though I did have an agent and had sold a science fiction short story to a magazine that also published Michael Moorcock. I thought I was on my way!
But then I had to get a proper job, and then I had to go to college and get a degree so I could get a better proper job. And then I had to get a Masters so I could get an even better proper job … before you know it, umpteen years have passed and I still hadn’t returned to writing.
So I started again, writing in the gaps between consultancy jobs, taking seven years to write the first Sam Dyke novel, another three (or was it four?) to write the second … and then deciding damn it, if I want to be a writer, I have to act as if I am a writer. So what with the Crash ensuring there was little work around for people like me, and having a tiny private pension to pay for food, I quit the proper job and returned to writing. And I’m loving it. Of course the fact that you can self-publish, and that people have ereaders, is an enormous boon to people in my position. I couldn’t have done what I’m doing now even five years ago.
To help me understand what I’m doing as a writer, I write an occasional blog, where I analyse and critique crime novels, at Crime Writing Confidential. The best posts from the blog are collected in the book of the same name, and earlier blog posts are reprinted in The Idle Writer. I’ve written four books about the English private investigator Sam Dyke, and one called Actress about a young actress trying to define her career. This book was awarded an Awesome Indie badge as a mark of its excellence. The fifth Sam Dyke novel, provisionally entitled The Strange Girl, will be out later in the year.
The Private Lie
The Hard Swim
The Strange Girl (to be completed)
A French Darcy
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Making a killing in business is one thing - doing it for real is another.
Sam Dyke is back! The private investigator who never gives up until the bad guys are caught—or worse.
Private Investigator Sam Dyke rescues a woman and embarks on a quest to find out why the document she carries is being sought by a high-ranking Government official and his team of ex-Army thugs.
Mark and Bobbie Ware have the perfect life—a huge mansion, enough money to satisfy every conceivable need, and a delightful son of ten years of age. But this all changes when a man disrupts that life by taking from it the single most important possession
Investigator Sam Dyke has never met his son, Daniel. Until today. And then he wishes he hadn't.
"He said, ‘Let’s be clear: there are two things that I want to come out of this. First, I want to be sure I’m being followed. Secondly, I want to know by whom. Do we understand each other?’"
Private Investigator Sam Dyke is hired to find a man who’s been released from prison and subsequently gone missing. But the ex-con is an ex-cop who might have been imprisoned for a crime that he didn’t commit.